Facebook To Begin Giving Y Combinator Startups VIP Treatment

Startups that enter the Y Combinator program don’t generally do it for the money alone — most companies receive $20,000 or less in seed funding. Instead, they do it for the exposure, connections, mentors, and resources that the YC program affords. And they just got one more major perk: Facebook has announced that it will be working to help YC companies create “transformative social experiences”, and it’s going to give them preferential treatment and access to company resources. From the Facebook post:

We’ll provide product, technical and design resources to support new Y Combinator companies interested in working with us to build deeply social products, whether a website or an application on Facebook.com. These companies will have priority access to our technologies and programs such as Facebook Credits, Instant Personalization and upcoming beta features. Y Combinator will be publishing a “Request for Startup” focused on social startups and is now looking for interested entrepreneurs for their winter 2011 funding cycle.

This sort of treatment from Facebook is by no means a guarantee for success, but it’s still a big deal. Early access to key features like Credits and Instant Personalization could help these startups leapfrog their competition, and Facebook will also be able to help startups boost their virality with tight Facebook Connect integration and News Feed Optimization.

This isn’t the first time Y Combinator has partnered with a hot social service — last year Twitter decided to give YC companies priority access to its stream.

The news comes on the heels of YC’s latest demo day, which featured a whopping 36 startups.